Home/ Companies / Start-ups/  Byju’s gets $540 million in funding at $3.6 billion valuation

Bengaluru: Online tutoring start-up Byju’s (Think and Learn Pvt. Ltd) has raised $540 million at a valuation of $3.6 billion, as robust investor demand swelled the size of its latest funding round and turned the founder of the eponymous start-up into an overnight billionaire.

The fundraising was led by Naspers and also saw participation from the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board and private equity giant General Atlantic, Byju’s said in a press release on Monday. General Atlantic also bought shares from existing shareholders, a person familiar with the development said separately.

The latest fundraising has turned Byju’s into India’s fourth-most valuable start-up, after digital payments firm Paytm (One97 Communications Ltd), cab-hailing service Ola and budget hotel chain Oyo Rooms.

Byju’s on Monday also claimed to have become the most valuable edtech start-up in the world. Mint was the first to report on 3 September that the company was in talks to raise around $300 million at a valuation of over $2 billion and was also the first to report on 31 October that investor demand had pushed up Byju’s valuation to $3.5 billion and that General Atlantic was in talks to invest in the company in the latest fundraising.

“Because the business has almost doubled in the last six months, naturally the valuation went up. The valuation growth is not because there were a lot of investors wanting to come on board—it’s mostly to do with the business growth," Byju’s founder and CEO, Byju Raveendran, said in an interview on Monday.

Last week, Mint had reported on the fundraise, after accessing regulatory documents filed by Byju’s.

The latest fundraise has more than tripled Byju’s valuation from its previous round and cemented its status as one of the breakout start-ups from India in the past five years. Raveendran now ranks among a handful of billionaires in India’s start-up ecosystem, as the promoter group that includes Raveendran and his family still controls 35-40% in the company, a back-of-the-envelope calculation shows.

Since starting out in 2008, Byju’s has raised over $240 million from Tencent, Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, Sequoia Capital and Lightspeed Venture Partners, among others.

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Updated: 17 Dec 2018, 11:18 PM IST
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